The ADA provides protection for persons with disabilities. Under the ADA persons with disabilities may be entitled to accommodations if they have a (i) a physical or mental impairment that (ii) substantially limits one or more major life activities within the meaning of the ADA. The ABO recognizes that under the ADA Amendments Act a broader class now qualifies as persons with disabilities who may need accommodations in testing.

The ABO is required to take steps in selecting and administering its examinations so as to best ensure that when the examination is administered to an individual with a disability that impairs sensory, manual or speaking skills, the examination results accurately reflect the individual’s aptitude or achievement level, or whatever other factors the examination purports to measure, rather than reflecting the individual’s impaired sensory, manual or speaking skills.

The ABO is obligated to: (i) ensure that its examinations are administered in facilities that are accessible to individuals with disabilities, or alternative arrangements are made; (ii) provide auxiliary aids and services for persons with impaired sensory, manual or speaking skills; and (iii) make other modifications or accommodations in the examination (e.g. changes in the length of time permitted for completion of the examination, or adaptation of the manner in which the examination is given).

There are several limits to these obligations. The ABO is only obligated to make accommodations to otherwise qualified candidates or diplomates with disabilities who, because of a substantially limiting impairment, cannot take an examination under standard conditions. ABO is not obligated to make any modification or provide any accommodations that would fundamentally alter the measurement of the skills or knowledge the examination is intended to test, or would jeopardize exam security. ABO is also not obligated to make any modification, provide any auxiliary aid or service or provide other accommodations that would impose an undue burden on ABO.